Oceania Nations Cup Final
AUSTRALIA has qualified for the CONFEDERATIONS CUP, beating NEW ZEALAND 2-0, in the final of the OCEANIA NATIONS CUP in Tahiti.
AUSTRALIA has qualified for the CONFEDERATIONS CUP, beating NEW ZEALAND 2-0 today, in the final of the OCEANIA NATIONS CUP in Tahiti.
The LG Socceroos dominated play from the opening whistle and were rarely troubled in defence.
After a number of corners, defender SHAUN MURPHY finally put the Australians on the board, and in the process scored his first National Team goal, after a STAN LAZARIDIS corner was headed back by PAUL AGOSTINO, for Murphy to slot it home in the 40th minute.
The one-way traffic continued in the second half, Murphy unlucky not to net his second just four minutes into the half, while Lazaridis almost caught the New Zealand keeper out in the 55th minute with a free kick which went just over the bar.
The LG Socceroos secured the victory in the 66th minute however, DANNY TIATTO making a break down the left and beating three defenders before crossing the ball to a waiting CRAIG FOSTER, who put it away for the 2-0 scoreline.
"It certainly was a relief to win the Final, it-s always a relief when you win games as important as this one," said LG Socceroo Coach FRANK FARINA after the game.
"I felt the boys played exceptionally well out there tonight, we dominated the entire 90 minutes and we deserved to win.
"New Zealand was always going to be dangerous, and they were, more from the set pieces than anything else, but we held our discipline under difficult circumstances.
"To actually qualify for the Confederations Cup is a huge relief for me, and I give a big pat on the back to the players, they deserve all of the accolades they get - they-ve given up a lot of things to spend the last three weeks in camp with the National Team, and it-s paid off for them.
"I-m very proud to be associated with this group of boys." Farina concluded.
SUMMARY: FULL TIME RESULT: FINAL - OCEANIA NATIONS CUP
AUSTRALIA 2 (Shaun Murphy 40-, Craig Foster 66- ) NEW ZEALAND 0
AUSTRALIA Zeljko Kalac (gk); Kevin Muscat, Shaun Murphy, Tony Popovic, Danny Tiatto, Stan Lazaridis, Paul Okon, Craig Foster (Aurelio Vidmar 80-), Brett Emerton, David Zdrilic, Paul Agostino (Clayton Zane 80-)
NEW ZEALAND Jason Batty (gk); Che Bunce, Sean Douglas, Jonathan Perry, Gavin Wilkinson (Raf De Gregorio 70-), Simon Elliott, Chris Killen, Chris Jackson, Mark Atkinson (Paul Urlovic 77-), Kris Bouckenooghe, Scott Smith
Yellow Cards G Wilkinson (NZ) 26-, D Tiatto (Aus) 44-, C Foster (Aus) 46-+, R De Gregorio (NZ) 83-